Wow Vs Avalanche, Who Would Have Thought It?

A week ago, the idea of a blockbuster clash between Wow and Avalanche in the Group 2 Richmond Derby Final would have sounded, well ... absurd.

Adam Dobbin

3 March 2021

A week ago, the idea of a blockbuster clash between Wow and Avalanche in the Group 2 Richmond Derby Final would have sounded, well … absurd.

But a lot can change in a week and after Avalanche soundly defeated Wow in an electrifying 30.07 in last Friday’s heats, the scene has been set for an engrossing finale to the group 2 showpiece this Friday night.

The surprising match-up is a tale of two very different preparations going into the $40,000-to-the-winner event.

In fact, they couldn’t be more dissimilar.

While Wow has spent the past six months taking all before him running track records and winning group 1s for Karina Britton, Avalanche has been parked on the sidelines with injury.

In fact, last Friday night’s spectacular 30.07 Derby heat romp – his first run for trainer Jason Mackay clocking the second fastest time ever at Richmond – was his first start since November.

The sheer idea of a greyhound running 30.07, let alone first-up for five months and returning from injury, only adds further weight to the spectacular training performance by Mackay to turn the son of Kinloch Brae out in such fashion.

Avalanche Sets Remarkable Derby Pace

Bookmaker Topsport has installed Wow the $2.20 favourite to turn the tables on Avalanche, quoted a more generous $2.90.


A margin of 3 ¼ lengths separated the pair last Friday night. It’s worth remembering Wow ran 30.30 in defeat such was the dominance of the winner.

Wow’s superstar status and the benefit of a box two draw for the final has seen him catapult to favouritism with Avalanche needing to overcome box seven, vastly different to the box one he rocketed to victory from last week.

Interestingly, trainer Jason Mackay isn’t all that concerned with box seven, adamant his comeback chaser can only improve off last Friday’s hit-out where he ran sections of 5.24 and 15.17, the time up the back almost unbelievable.

And when Mackay speaks it’s worth listening, already boasting two Richmond Derby trophies on the mantelpiece courtesy of Path To Vegas and Bogie Brave.

And he’s no stranger to putting a fast one around Richmond either with record holder Punch One Out and Zipping Garth readily springing to mind.

Off last week’s performances Avalanche and Wow are clearly the ones to beat.

But don’t for a moment think it is a foregone conclusion.

Throw into the mix proven group performers Incapacitated, Ritza Coen and exciting up and comer It’s A Rush and you have yourself one exceptional race.

What will be of most interest is the time it takes to win the time-honoured event and where they sit in the illustrious list below.

One can assume it will be at the pointy end.

Top 25 Fastest Richmond 535m times

29.90 Punch One Out Jason Mackay
30.07 Avalanche Jason Mackay
30.08 Zulu Zeus Frank Hurst
30.09 Zipping Garth Jason Mackay
30.11 Jaro Bale Andrea Dailly
30.13 Lithgow Panther John Chapman
30.14 Fancy Liza Dennis Barnes
30.16 Loathsome Jason Magri
30.17 Sand Burner Jason Mackay
30.20 Prince Diablo John Finn
30.21 Stanley Road Mark Gatt
30.21 Zipping Mitzy Jason Magri
30.21 Fancy Mandy Tracey Hurst
30.22 Quasi Bale Mark Delbridge
30.22 Red Road Mark Gatt
30.23 Goodesy John Finn
30.24 Little Sparkle Ken Chappelow
30.25 Zulu Zeus Frank Hurst
30.25 Star Sapphire Dave Richardson
30.26 Western Land Frank Hardman
30.26 Addison Road Mark Gatt
30.26 Swift Fancy Neville Brown
30.26 Zipping Sultan Jason Magri
30.26 Miss Splendamiro Hank Vanderburg
30.27 Tuiaki Neville Brown